Van Alstine Transcendence Eight Vacuum Tube RIAA Phono Preamplifier Phono Preamps

Van Alstine Transcendence Eight Vacuum Tube RIAA Phono Preamplifier Phono Preamps 


Transcendence Eight Vacuum Tube RIAA Phono Preamplfiier has the same amazing phono circuits found in the full- function Transcendence Eight vacuum tube preamplifier in the rugged and beautiful SL chassis. Available factory-wired only.


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[Dec 20, 2008]
Audio Enthusiast


Very liquid with smooth bass, very good detail and resolution with excellent transparency and big sound stage. Excellent clarity and no detectable noise.


The treble is clear but a little subdued for my tastes.

The Transcendent 8 or T8 DAC is a Vacuum tube DAC and one of three types that Frank Van Alstine makes. I believe it retails for $1400 not the $999 which is what the Solid State Insight DAC sells for. I had a chance to audition this DAC as well as the SS Insight and the SS/Tube hybrid DAC called the Ultra. First off, none of the 3 DACS has a solid state sound and they don't really have a Tube sound either. They all have a more natural inbetween sound with the T-8 having the warmest sound out of the 3. Bass is smooth and treble is clear but a little more subdued compared to the other 2 DAC's. The sound stage is huge and transparency is excellent. This is a very liquid DAC with excellent clarity and resolution. The Ultra Hybrid DAC however beats it in resolution, detail, sound stage and transparency, and deeper bass but it cost $300 more.

If your looking for a DAC that is crystal clear, very liquid and smooth then this is the DAC for the job. As a side note, all three of the VA DAC's sounded much better than my Cambridge Audio 840c CDP which I sold in favor of the VA hybrid DAC.

Customer Service

Similar Products Used:

Van Alstine Insight DAC, Van Alstine Hybrid DAC, Cambridge Audio 840c

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